Cathedral Grove

 

According to the park description, Cathedral Grove (MacMillan Park) got its name in the 1920’s from Governor General Viscount Willingdon’s description. In 1929, land was donated by H.R. MacMillan to be park, so people could continue to enjoy the area. It’s about a 2 hour drive from Victoria, just past Parksville on Hwy 4, at the far end of Cameron Lake. I think next time we’re up there we’ll also check out Little Qualicum Falls – it looks pretty neat online.

These trees definitely make you feel small –  most of them are too large to reach around, even with Eric! Not that I tried. The root systems are too fragile, and are shallow. The trees can be toppled by a strong wind, as in 1997. The cedars can take quite a long time to decompose, and we could still see springboard marks in some of the stumps from early logging.

The “Big Tree” is the largest tree in the park, and is about 76m/250ft tall, and still growing! I think the sign said it’s about 9m around.  Huge! It’s hard to tell in the picture above, but that log laying at the bottom of the Big Tree is about 5ft (give or take). One lady had a hard time jumping down after she and her friend were taking pictures. (heehee)

It was a bit chilly, but still a nice day. (Eric learned that in November, sweaters and gloves are a good idea, even if it’s warmish at home. I was toasty warm :p)  Oh! And there were Jack O Lanterns everywhere! I’m not sure where they came from, but on the bridges and at the entrance areas to both sides of the park, people left pumpkins. It was a cool little surprise, and in the dark, they would look pretty creepy.

I’m having fun exploring a different park each week. Any suggestions for next week? (Preferably things on the south half of the island.)